The Acholi War Debt Claimants Association has pointed accusing fingers at the Attorney General and officials from Ministry of Finance over claims of alleged diversion of compensation claims to the tune of Ushs50 billion.
Led by its Executive Director, Eng. Noah Oponya, the war claimants now want Speaker Rebecca Kadaga to intervene and prevail over the said officials.
“Our petition is to invite you to look at the matter of diversion of funds and the payment of Ushs 50 billion. We are requesting for Shs150 billion to be accommodated in the last quarter of the budget for financial year 2017/2018,” said Oponya in a meeting with the Speaker on Monday.
Oponya said a plan to have their payment made has always been scuttled by officials from the Office of the Attorney General and Accountant General.
“We ask you to exert your authority on the Attorney General so that the funds are paid immediately,” said Oponya.
Kadaga said she will summon Finance Minister Matia Kasaija to explain, but that in the event that the officials are not forthcoming, she will directly engage President Yoweri Museveni.
“I am going to call them so that they tell me what is going on with the money [payment]. I will interrogate the matter and see what is happening with Finance, and also remind the President about the diversion,” said Kadaga.
Hailing from all the districts of Acholi sub-region, the leaders said they are no longer trusted by claimants’ families who wriggle through daily frustrations waiting for funds that are not coming through.
Oponya said on the few occasions that he had to receive funds on behalf of the association; it is always less than the value promised.
He cited the Accountant General’s office as the main roadblock to their dues, saying they are casually hopped from Ministry of Finance over unending bureaucratic technicalities.
Kadaga said upon receipt of their letter, she asked Accountant General Lawrence Semakula and Kasaija to be in attendance, but that a cabinet meeting scuttled their presence.